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Famous Leeds music studios to welcome star guest this weekend as part of free public tours

Embrace drummer Mike Heaton will be the special guest this Sunday (28 May) when Old Chapel Music Studios in Leeds open its doors for the latest round of free public tours.

The historic venue launched the initiative in November 2022 and will continue to host monthly tours until February 2024.

Embrace is one of a host of well-known acts from the city to use the facilities in Holbeck, alongside the Kaiser Chiefs, Sisters of Mercy, Red Lorry Yellow Lorry and many others.

Heaton will be present to meet visitors answer questions, pose for pictures and even give personal drum lessons.

Embrace first arrived at Old Chapel Studios in the early 1990s and fondly recall their time onsite.

Mike Heaton said: “My memories of Old Chapel Studios are all really great, we had a lot of fun there.

“It’s a great place, great community then, so many different bands, so many different genres of music in there, I don’t remember any bad words said between the bands, everyone got on even though we were radically different people.

“It was a space where you could be creative, develop, it was always great value for money and just a fantastic place.”

Katie Hayes, Joint CEO of Old Chapel Music CIC, said: “We are thrilled to be welcoming Mike back to the studios.

“Places on Sunday’s tours are limited but filling up fast. I would encourage music fans to visit our website and book their slot for free.

“I have no doubt that it will be a day to remember.”

Old Chapel Music CIC – a not for profit community interest company which manages the studios – supports young people, up-and-coming artists and community groups, giving them access to the same facilities as established bands.

The tours, funded by Leeds Civic Trust, cover the facility’s relocation and rebrand from Parkside Studios in 1992, together with the 30-year tale of its development from a former Wesleyan chapel into the community-focused creative hub it has become.

Featuring never-before-seen artefacts, participants have the chance to get hands-on with instruments and recording facilities, join in with quizzes and take away photo mementos from their visit.

The two-hour tours, which run at 11.30am and 2.30pm on the last Sunday of every month, require advance booking.

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Embrace drummer Mike Heaton (right) with Old Chapel Music CIC Joint CEO Katie Hayes and Studio Supervisor Jim Fields at Old Chapel Music Studios

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ABOUT OLD CHAPEL MUSIC STUDIOS We are a not for profit Community Interest Company, serving musicians of all ages, sizes, shapes, colours and tastes. Home of the best of Leeds’ rock, pop, punk, indie, DIY, experimental and extraordinary bands. A one stop shop for rehearsal, writing, recording, repairs and advice. Also home to Swan Song Project, Single Coil Guitar repairs, Star Cloths UK and Old Chapel Recording Studios. We were the first purpose built rehearsal studio in Leeds, opening in 1982 as Parkside Studios in Armley, later moving to an old Wesleyan chapel building at Czar Street, Holbeck, becoming Old Chapel Music Studios in 1992. From the start the studios have been the starting blocks for many of the most successful acts to emerge from Leeds since the early 80’s – The Wedding Present, Sisters of Mercy, Red Lorry Yellow Lorry, The Mission, Age of Chance, The March Violets, Cud, Embrace, Duels, Kaiser Chiefs, I Like Trains, The Pigeon Detectives, Pulled Apart By Horses – the list goes on, not to mention the countless equally talented, but less famous bands, working pub and club acts, wedding bands, school and student bands formed and working in Leeds. Old Chapel Music Studios is a rehearsal rooms,recording studio and community hub based in the south of Leeds working in partnership with other community organisations. Old chapel has four rehearsal rooms that can cater to any size band!

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